What Leads To Dry Tampons?
Most of us have been in that situation where our period is on its last legs. Maybe you don’t like wearing pads, or perhaps a tampon seems more practical, but you need to use something just in case your flow isn’t entirely over. You go through your day feeling like everything is fine, and you can finally relax a little after a rough cycle.
But then comes the time to change your tampon, and you’re faced with one of the worst feelings someone who menstruates can experience…
The cringe-worthy agony of pulling out a dry tampon.
Now we know what you’re thinking; that doesn’t sound all that agonizing, but forgive the hyperbole, as it can be pretty horrifying. For some, the feeling of a dry tampon being pulled from your vaginal canal can be akin to nails on a chalkboard. It has become so commonplace for many of us that we don’t tend to think about why this phenomenon happens in the first place.
Thankfully it isn’t usually a cause for concern as there are some common reasons you might be pulling out dry cotton when you didn’t expect to.
Using The Wrong Tampon
Of course, you’re probably wondering what ‘the wrong tampon’ even means. How can a tampon be wrong if it’s doing the job it was made to do? But if your tampon is coming out dry when it shouldn’t, you might be using the wrong kind.
Every vagina is different, so some people might find that their specific package needs specific products to keep them comfortable during their cycle. Tampons that open side to side rather than 360’ can lead to not everything being absorbed by the cotton. This can leave dry spots that make it uncomfortable to remove.
You may also be using the wrong absorbency for you and your cycle. While some people with heavier flows can get away with Super or Super Plus tampons, you might pull out a dry one because your period is lighter than recommended for those absorbencies. You might even be using the wrong tampon at the wrong time, like using a more absorbent tampon near the end of your period when it is at its lightest.
You might not imagine it to be, but this is a fairly common issue among menstruating people. Vaginal dryness is caused by a hormonal imbalance, which can lead to a lessened estrogen level. Estrogen helps your body produce the fluid that keeps the vagina moist so it stays healthy. This fluid helps with the insertion of tampons, and typically you’ll find that fluid is more present during your period as your hormones are at their peak.
For some people, though, their vagina may get dryer on their period, causing pain when they try to insert or remove tampons. It isn’t always a serious condition, but if you’re worried that you might be experiencing moderate to severe vaginal dryness, you should consider talking to an OB-GYN. They can help you navigate what’s happening and even recommend treatments if it is causing you any pain or disruptions to your lifestyle.
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The simplest reason you might remove an incredibly dry tampon is that you’ve put one in too early or too late into your period. If you know you’re going to start, you may try and put one in just in case, but your body isn’t shedding much yet, and your hormones aren’t quite there yet, either. This means when you go to change it, it likely hasn’t absorbed anything just yet, and you’re going to be pulling out one dry piece of cotton.
This goes the same for the ending of your period. You know you are still on the last legs of it, and you want to put in one just so you don’t leak, but there isn’t enough discharge to lubricate it properly. If you’re just starting or about to finish, you might be better off using a panty-liner or a pad until you’re sure you’re stopping. Then you’ll be able to avoid what to some feels like a Brazilian wax to the inside of your vagina.
Timing when you use a tampon can save you a lot of potential pain and trauma. Feel out your body and decide from there.